I am back from vacation!
After the first few days of sorting out everyday business matters, I am ready to be with you today. It feels good to be back!
Anyway, to get to the point, today I would like to talk about your personal development, our personal development.
Very often, we tend to look very far and reflect on complex things when thinking about personal development.
What we tend to forget however, is that to develop ourselves and to learn on the way, we only need to pay attention to the things around us.
We need to pay attention to those things that are different. There are plenty of different things, people, habits, traditions and patterns around us.
No matter where you live. But who, for example, knocks on all doors in the neighbourhood to introduce themselves and asks them what they do for a living?
I don’t. Maybe I should. Maybe I would be less afraid to talk to strangers, afterwards.
Active and Passive Learning
I want to share which you those learning experiences that we make, which make us grow, but that we originally had not envisioned at all.
Imagine you would knock on all doors in your neighbourhood. You could do it for different reasons, but you would do it for A reason, right?
Maybe you have no milk left to finish the cake. Maybe you want to reduce your fear to talk to strangers, who knows.
That know on the door would be based upon your initiation, your willingness to go over to their place.
There is another type of personal development, one that you cannot actively launch and control.
I am referring to Personal Development which is triggered by others – by events, people and their habits that you cannot influence. Those that you did not necessarily expect.
Sometimes these are the best forms of personal development, in my view!
So, if you are looking for some of that intense development, I have one easy tip for you.
Go out there: Visit a Foreign Country!
That is it.
Maybe you have already a trip planned for the autumn break or for Christmas, or maybe just for a long weekend.
If you cannot afford such a trip, try to visit one of the foreign quarters in one of the major cities of your country. That is not exactly the same, but that will do.
It is not about spending a large amount of money, it is about embracing another culture and learning from the cultural differences. Wherever you can do that is fine by me.
- Pick a culture that you have had no exposure to, up to now.
- Set a date & invite someone along.
- Mix with the local people where possible, if they understand English (or any other language that you may speak for that matter). Try to understand their customs, their habits and their traditions.
- Maybe you can get an invite for a home-cooked meal through a friend of a friend?
- Here is a selection of questions you might want to pay attention to: Do they shake hands when greeting? Are they shy or do they ask questions? Do they expect gifts? How do you show an interest in them and how do they show an interest in you? How do they behave towards each other?
- What do you notice about your own behaviour? Your own patterns?
- There is no right, or wrong. Right?
As you might have guessed by now, especially if you have seen my latest post on my facebook page, I have just been through this experience. Last weekend, I came back from a three-week trip to East Africa, to Kenya, to be precise. 🙂
It was very rewarding as well as exciting. And tiring, I have to admit.
I believe we had a healthy mix of meeting locals as well as sightseeing to see different parts of the country along with taking many photos of lots of wild animals.
I got exposed to the Kenyan culture on various occasions throughout the trip. It was eye-opening!
We had different gatherings with acquaintances who were very open-hearted, no matter how close the relationship was.
We saw how the poor people live and how the rich people live. Big contrasts.
I also refreshed some insights on the German culture. As you do when you are not at home, you pay more attention to it.
I learned a lot, without a doubt!
I would do it again, anytime.
So, are you going for it?
Let me know in the comments what your plans are! What foreign culture would you like to discover?
P.S: If you want to ask me any questions, please feel free to drop a line in the comment box below or get in contact with me on Facebook!